28 May, 2008
10 : 00
The long-awaited moment for Natasha Weaser, a Year 10 student of YCIS Shanghai, was electric and heartening. On May 24, Natasha accomplished her Olympic Torch Relay at the Shanghai Jiaotong University.
The long-awaited moment for Natasha Weaser, a Year 10 student of YCIS Shanghai, was electric and heartening. On May 24, Natasha accomplished her Olympic Torch Relay at the Shanghai Jiaotong University. The youngest torch bearer of the Shanghai leg was appreciated by her staying behind to chat with about 100 students in Mandarin afterwards. It is Natasha’s alignment of the Olympic spirit to bridge between the East and the West.
Selected as one of the only five foreigners to be given the privilege of carrying the Olympic Torch in Shanghai, Natasha was chosen to represent both the US and the International Student Body of Shanghai. The student received wide press coverage from both local and foreign media where she shared her vision of being the Olympic torch bearer.
“I am extremely excited and I am counting down the days until the torch arrives in Shanghai,” said Natasha earlier in May in great anticipation. “For me, the best part is gathering donations from people to sponsor my torch run so I can in turn raise enough money for an impoverished child with a congenital heart problem to have a chance for a new life.” The idea came to Natasha as she volunteers for the charity organisation, Heart to Heart, and helps out at the playroom with the heart surgery patients every Saturday afternoon. (see story next page)
For the young torch bearer, the Beijing Olympic theme "One world, one dream" is a motto all should hold true to oneself. She believes this dream is about unity despite differences in race, religion, culture or beliefs; in an increasingly global world, this is very important to solve many of the issues that face us today.
“The Olympic torch is the symbol of the Olympic spirit of friendship, peace and unity and any attempt to exploit this for political purposes is very regrettable,” said Natasha. “It was very disappointing to see protestors on TV trying to extinguish the flame and attempting to grab the torch from torchbearers. Jin Jing, the disabled Chinese athlete that protected the torch against an assault from a protestor is someone I really admire. I hope the rest of the Olympic torch run can go on smoothly.”
Indeed, the Shanghai leg of the torch run rounded off in a sea of applause and cheers.